Although many people sleep well most of the time, experiencing an occasional night of insomnia is common. On those nights when a late night snack, stress, or anxiety won’t let you rest, try these relaxation tips to get back on track:
Learn guided visualization: The idea is to picture a scene that is completely relaxing as you bring different sensory elements into your visual. If your favorite place is the beach, close your eyes and relax your entire body. Then, really feel the sand between your toes, the warmth of the sun on your skin and hear the wind and waves in the background.
Go with the classics, count backwards: The key to this technique is to count very slowly, about once every second from 100. Remember not to panic if you lose count, you might just be getting sleepy so, simply start over. The goal is not to make it down to 1, it’s to fall asleep.
Try guided imagery: Guided imagery is closely related to hypnosis and meditation. Use your brain power to picture a ball of yarn and see it unravel slowly, unwinding as it journeys across the floor. It’s important to sense the yarn and release your own tension as the ball of yarn gets smaller leading to a state of rest.
Treat your anxieties: Remedies for anxiety include practicing yoga, exercise, and meditation. If you find that those options don’t work for you, don’t be afraid to speak with a licensed physician about other therapies and prescription medications.
Keep in touch with your sleep cycles: Recording your sleep cycle is a great way to understand your sleep needs and what you may need to adjust. A great tool to use for this task is the Basis Band. This wonderful technology monitors your sleep cycle in great detail, including skin temperature, heart rate, and perspiration. With the ability to gain knowledge about your various sleep cycles such as REM sleep, you’ll be able to know when to capitalize on high-quality sleep.
Switch off nostril breathing: This technique helps with deep relaxation by balancing the right and left sides of the brain while easing the nervous system. Here’s what to do: Place your right thumb and ring finger on either sides of your nostrils then take a deep breath. Close your right nostril and as you inhale count to 4, at the top of that breath, close your left nostril and hold your breath for another count of 4. Next, release your right nostril and exhale for a count of 4. Repeat the cycles until you feel relaxed, ending with exhaling through the left nostril.
Don’t get wound up when you can fall asleep. Give these tips a try and let us know how they work for you!